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Why Only 15 Out of 530 Students at a Colorado High School Took a Required Standardized Test

By: Krystle Crossman

With the rise of standardized testing in schools across the country concerns about our children’s education are growing. Students seem to be learning more about specifics that are on the test but nothing outside of that. The purpose of the Colorado Measures of Academic Success test is causing teachers to teach less “outside the box” information and only focus what is on the test. The results of the test doesn’t have anything to do with grades but rather what the students have learned over the course of the year. The students are concerned that they are not getting a full education because of the pressure to do well on these tests.

Seniors in Fairview High School in Colorado protested and refused to take the test. Out of the 530 students in attendance at the school only 15 actually took the test. The rest went out to the football field and while they were protesting collected food and school supplies for nearby charities. The senior who organized the whole thing, Jennifer Jun, stated that they know what the test is for an understand that it’s to gauge their performance and their teacher’s performance but they are concerned that they are not able to learn anything else outside of what the test is on.

Bruce Messinger who is the superintendent for Boulder Valley School District states that there is a real concern that there is too much time spent on testing and not enough time spent on teaching the students the information that they should be learning. Only 15% of seniors in this district took the test. Over 1,900 students in the Douglas County School District protested the test.

A video was made during the protest at Fairview High School so that they could express their concerns and show the country that there are real issues with the testing. They stated that the tests are not in line with their curriculum at the school. An example that they gave is that economics is a very large portion of the standardized test but economics is not a class that is mandatory at the high school. A director from the Colorado Department of Education stated that if the students feel that they aren’t learning the material that is on the test than the school is not doing something right.

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